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Future development of Changing Market Towns

Information on the future development of Changing Market Towns

As you may know, in October 2019, Ely Diocese submitted a request for an extension of the Renewal and Reform funding for our Changing Market Towns project.  Our request for additional funding was justified by the excellent progress being made in our five Phase 1 towns (Wisbech, March, Littleport, Chatteris and Ramsey), together with the two church plants and the Wisbech Learning Community.  The Strategic Development Unit recognised this as being “….well-delivered, and showing very promising signs of growth”. 

Unfortunately, our request did not meet the new SDU criterion, which focuses funding on addressing larger urban areas with a population of more than 100,000 people.  This decision does not affect the original Phase 1 of the project and it will continue very much as originally planned. It is important to note that funds for existing market towns workers remain secure.

We have decided that we shall, in any case, continue to expand Changing Market Towns utilising funds that have already been committed to the project. As has always been the case with the project, these funds will not involve the expenditure of ministry share. This commitment will allow investment in Huntingdon and St Neots as immediate priorities. Further work in other towns will continue in the longer term.

One important piece of good news is that we now have greater local control over the pace at which plans proceed.  There is now no longer a need to wait for the timing of the Strategic Development Unit, and further investment will start in advance of the previous plan.  The first new posts in market towns will be created in the first half of 2020.

Please continue to keep Changing Market Towns in your prayers.  This is ground-breaking work that has already led to remarkable growth, and we look forward with confidence as we seek to build on all that has been achieved already.

With very best wishes

Ven Hugh McCurdy

Archdeacon of Huntingdon and Wisbech

Paul Evans

Diocesan Secretary

Revd Canon Mike Booker

Bishop’s Change Officer for Market Towns



Page last updated: Tuesday 17th December 2019 3:11 PM
First published on: 17th December 2019
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